From tide pools and coral reefs to -pygmy gobies and whale sharks, underwater photographers and divers see a world that abounds with fascinating fish and creatures. The book Reef Life: A Guide to Tropical Marine Life — a collaborative project by underwater photographer and marine biologist Brandon Cole and writer and researcher Scott Michael — identifies hundreds of the most commonly encountered species in tropical marine environments all over the world.
“The book has lots of bonus materials to help people understand and appreciate reef ecology and tropical marine ecosystems,” says Cole. “It is much more than your typical fish-ID book.”
Reef Life features more than 1,000 color photographs of 800 species. The ID guide includes the most likely encountered fishes and features name, species, habitat, range and a description particular to the animal covered. Readers will find information on feeding, mimicry and symbiosis. There is also a chapter on conservation.
“To show only pretty pictures, to talk only about the beauty on the reef is telling only part of the story,” says Cole. “The health of our planet’s oceans must be addressed. There is so much at stake.”
Firefly Books, 616 pages, $35. Available at bookstores and amazon.com.